UOB POY 2012 Results

UOB Paintings Of The Year

Just Let Me Sleep by Esmond Loh Fah Rong
UOB POY 2012 (Singapore)
Just Let Me Sleep is an emotive artwork that depicts the strangled feelings of the youthful 17-year-old artist. It speaks of the relentless pressures and work that confront us daily.

Rough, unfettered strokes of oil and acrylic swirl across the primed canvas. These short, energetic strokes stem from repeated, somewhat savage stabbing movements. The sepia color palette was brought to life with contesting strokes of white, blue and red.

As with all other recent winners, this UOB POY is a controversial win. Many artists - including previous UOB POY winner Gong Yao Min, established local artists Jeremy Sharma and Yeo Shih Yun - have criticised it. The expressive nature of the work was deemed to be a facade for the artist's lack of skill and was seen as not being original enough.

What do you think? Hmm...

School Hymns by Y. Indra Wahyu
UOB POY 2012 (Indonesia)
Grand Regional Prize
The above piece by Y. Indra Wahyu is brilliant. It shows a wonderful combination of abstraction and realism, wit and sobriety. The juxtaposition of warm red and orange with cool blue and black creates a compelling visual narrative.

The unusual composition captures the difficulty of trying to get a choir to sing in harmony. 

Ah Long by Mohd Azri bin Abdullah
UOB POY 2012 (Malaysia)
Faith by Imrom Yunu
UOB POY 2012 (Thailand)

Platinum Awards
The Melancholy of Departure #01, #03, #08
by Kieran Kum Chee-Kin
The Melancholy of Departure #01, #03 and #08 is a stark representation of the rapid changes in Singapore's urban landscape. It delves into the loss of our past and collective memories as we steamroll into the glittering future.

The past is neglected. Ignored and forsaken. It is sometimes excised with scientific detachment. 

Buildings are destroyed, and along with this destruction, memories. What a pity.

Wandering Cloud by Liu Quandai

Growing Up by Eugene Tan Wei Jie
Don't Rush Into Growing Up by Lu Yun Ru
Highly Commended Awards (Open)

Animal's Kingdom by Andrea Yap En Rui
Still Life by Alvin Ong Liang Jie
HOR2SIE, 2012 by Boedi Widjaja

Most Promising Young Artist
Alone And Unwanted by Sherilyn Shaan Veera

Highly Commended Awards (Youth)

I said, Hello, I said, Is Anybody There by Chia Yu Xuan
Soliloquy by William Batara Jeremiah Samosir
Time Brought Forward by Ge Xiao Cong
All in all, this UOB POY 2012 was an exhibition with some particularly noteworthy pieces.

The furor over the winning piece, Just Let Me Sleep, throws up polarising questions on the nature of painting.

What makes a good painting worthy of the $30,000 prize money? Technical skill? Depth of thought? Age and experience of the artist?

There is a lingering suspicion that the debacle has been intense mainly because of the generous, attending prize money. If this is so, what does it reflect about our Singapore society?

UOB Painting Of the Year. It isn't merely an art competition.